Sometimes, due to circumstances beyond your control, you can find yourself without a job. It’s a situation that happens to millions of people around the world on a daily basis, so you’re not alone if it does happen to you. It can have a profound psychological impact as well as the obvious financial detriment, too. If you do lose your job, though, the most important thing is not to panic. Try to keep a level head and follow our guide so you can move forward and hopefully snag yourself a new job. Here’s what you should do if you find yourself jobless.
Try to look after yourself financially
Losing your job can leave a massive hole in your finances. You could find yourself scrambling to keep up with monthly bill payments and expenditures; where once you had plenty to spare, now you’re having to count every penny. There’s no reason to panic, though. You can find money from plenty of different sources; companies even provide loans for people on benefits, so if you are drawing a government benefit like Universal Credit, you could take a loan out and have enough to cover your bases. Be sure you don’t take a loan out if you know you can’t cover the repayment cost, though.
Start looking for new work
It’s an accepted fact that employers don’t like to see gaps in your CV. This is true to an extent; if you can explain why you haven’t worked in a certain amount of time, it’s not likely to cause issues. However, if you don’t immediately start searching for new work after you lose your job, employers may question your dedication to the world of work and may pass you over for an interviewee they deem more diligent. That’s why it’s important to start looking for work straight away. It’s also a good idea because it’ll help you close the financial gap when you lose your job.
Work on your CV
Whether you call it a CV or a “resume”, there’s no denying that the document you hand over to employers is one of the most important things you’ll work on in your life. When you lose your job, you should take it as an opportunity to brush up your CV and change some of the details that are outdated. Get a professional to take a look at the document and see what needs changing. If you can’t access a professional, ask friends and family if they wouldn’t mind going over it for you; fresh eyes can often spot things you can’t, after all.
Volunteering can be one of the most rewarding ventures you embark on. When you volunteer, you’re willingly giving your time to an organisation that desperately needs the manpower, so you’re doing a lot of good, which is something to be proud of. There are other benefits to volunteering, too; it can improve your mental health, boost your physical health, and even help you to make new friends. It’s also excellent for your CV; if employers see you’re proactive enough to volunteer between jobs, it’ll show them that you’re a hard worker.
Claim any benefits you’re entitled to
As soon as you lose your job – or as soon as you find out you’re going to – it’s a good idea to find out what benefits you’re entitled to and to start claiming them. These benefits are designed to help you while you search for something new, so you should try to make sure you claim as many as you can. You might be surprised what you’re entitled to claim; sometimes, there are obscure or esoteric benefits that the government isn’t good at telling you about. Do your research thoroughly and make sure you’re getting everything you can.
Work on your budget
After you lose your job, it’s likely you’ll be in worse financial shape. You should re-examine your budget and see if there’s anywhere new you can, or should, make cuts. Sit down with any other members of your household and talk sincerely about your budget. With one fewer salary in the home, you may find that certain luxuries or comforts need to be put on the back burner, at least for now. The first places to start should be indulgences like meals out, trips away, or superfluous subscription services you’re no longer using.
Switch up your social media presence
Employers will often look at your social media profiles when they want to learn about what you’re really like. That’s why losing your job is a great opportunity to refresh your social media pages and make sure that the information on them is up to date. You should also comb your pages to ensure there isn’t anything controversial or incriminating on them; employers will definitely see that if it’s publicly available. Make sure to comb pages you don’t frequently visit, because there might be something on them you’ve left and forgotten.
Work on your interview technique
Your interview technique is one of the most important elements that could lead to you getting a new job. That’s why it’s important to make sure you’re ready for whatever interviews you may secure. Set up some mock interviews with friends and family and ask them if they wouldn’t mind playing the part of the prospective employer. Together with them, draw up a list of questions you might be asked by your interviewer, and devise answers to them. While you’ll never be able to pre-empt every question, being at least moderately prepared will stand you in good stead for real interviews.